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Police arrest man accused of causing death of 16-year-old pedestrian in Decatur

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Police arrest man accused of causing death of 16-year-old pedestrian in Decatur

Decatur Police. Photo by Dean Hesse.

This story has been updated. 

Decatur, GA — Decatur Police on Thursday confirmed the arrest of a driver accused of causing the death of 16-year-old Kevin Valente of Scottdale.

He died on Nov. 6 after the driver allegedly hit him while he was walking near the intersection of East College Avenue and Commerce Drive. After the Decatur Police Department completed its investigation, warrants were issued for 26-year-old Jared Bradley of Decatur, Ga.

Jail records show Bradley was taken into custody on Nov. 15, and he was still in the county jail as of Nov. 16.

Jared Bradley. Booking photo obtained from the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office.

He’s facing charges of reckless driving and first degree homicide by vehicle.

A conviction of first degree homicide by vehicle carries a minimum three-year prison sentence, with a maximum sentence of 15 years. The penalty for reckless driving is a sentence of up to 12 months in jail and a fine.

“In reference to the fatal pedestrian accident that occurred on Monday, Nov. 6, 2023 at 7:17 pm, the Decatur Police Department completed a thorough accident reconstruction and investigation that led to 26-year-old Jared Bradley of Decatur, Georgia being charged in this case,” Decatur Police Sgt. John Bender previously said. “Mr. Bradley was operating a gray BMW 330i, turning left onto East College Avenue from Commerce Drive. While turning, Mr. Bradley accelerated in a reckless manner, leaving the roadway, striking and killing 16-year-old Kevin Valente of Scottdale, Ga.”

Go Fund Me set up on behalf of Valente’s family says he was on the sidewalk when he was struck.

“Marisol Valente lost her 16-year-old son, Kevin Valente Monday night [Nov. 6],” the Go Fund Me says. “He was struck by a car while walking down a sidewalk in Decatur. Kevin was on his way to meet Marisol and walk her home from work to make sure she was safe. Marisol is enduring something no mother should have to. Please help our friend Marisol in her time of need.”

Bradley is the fourth driver accused of causing a crash involving a pedestrian on Nov. 6. The pedestrians in the other crashes on Nov. 6 received non-life-threatening injuries.

City officials are hoping a planning process funded by a grant can yield recommendations that will prevent future pedestrian crashes. For more information about that story, click here.

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